Confusion reigns over England appointment of former Hoppers star

Steve Borthwick

Steve Borthwick

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England are in dispute with Bristol over the release of Steve Borthwick with governing body and club issuing conflicting statements over the forwards coach’s appointment to the staff of Eddie Jones.

England are in dispute with Bristol over the release of Steve Borthwick with governing body and club issuing conflicting statements over the forwards coach’s appointment to the staff of Eddie Jones.

Little over an hour after the Rugby Football Union had announced former Preston Grasshoppers star Borthwick as the first backroom arrival of Jones’ regime, Bristol declared that the former England captain had not been granted permission to leave.

England have grown frustrated at the difficulty in agreeing Borthwick’s release from his contract at Ashton Gate, with the Greene King IPA Championship club believed to be seeking a large six-figure sum in compensation.

Borthwicksubmitted his notice on Tuesday in an attempt to force his departure and a stand-off has ensued which it is hoped will be brought to a conclusion by the end of the week.

Bristol, who are hoping to secure a return to the Aviva Premiership at the end of the season and want to keep their highly rated assistant coach, said Borthwick’s exit was far from guaranteed.

“Bristol want to make it clear that we have not agreed that Steve Borthwick can leave our employment,”